Final report, the commercial star-ship Nostromo. Third officer reporting. The other members of the crew: Kane, Lambert, Parker, Brett, Ash and Captain Dallas are dead. Cargo and ship destroyed. I should reach the frontier within six weeks. With a little luck the network will pick me up. This is Ripley, last survivor of the Nostromo, signing off.
Ellen Ripley will always remain a role model to me and a marvel as both a horror movie “final girl” and a feminist icon. Throughout the films she proves herself as the hero without sacrificing her femininity and being masculinized in order to survive. Her compassion or her womanhood is never her undoing, and although sexuality is a major theme in the Alien franchise, she is never reduced to a sexual object. She is intelligent and tough talking, but she also saves an orphan child who essentially becomes her surrogate daughter and while her willfulness is maternal, that doesn’t hinder her from strapping herself in a power suit and fucking up an alien like it’s nobodies business.
That’s essentially what makes Ripley so special to me and so unique as a film heroine, especially a horror one: that she subverts traditional gender roles while still retaining her female identity and without compromising herself.